Camino Nuevo Charter Academy

Senior Leadership Team

SENIOR LEADERSHIP TEAM
Ana Ponce
Ana F. Ponce
Chief Executive Officer
Ana Ponce is committed to providing high quality educational options for families in the greater MacArthur Park area of Los Angeles. Under her leadership, the Camino Nuevo Charter Academy schools have earned widespread recognition for academic excellence, particularly for improving outcomes for Latino English language learners, and won the Title 1 Academic Achievement award, the California Association of Bilingual Education Seal of Excellence, and the California Distinguished Schools award. For her efforts, Forbes magazine named Ana one of the top seven most powerful educators in the world. 
 
Ana was a Teach for America corps member and taught for three years at a South L.A. district school. Determined to close the achievement and opportunity gaps for low-income, minority students, she helped open the first independent charter school in South L.A, where she taught for seven years before joining Camino Nuevo in 2001. At Camino Nuevo, she found herself working with families in the neighborhood where she grew up, investing them and their children in being College Ready, College Bound
 

Ana holds a master's degree in bilingual-bicultural education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a second master's from the University of California, Los Angeles. She also earned a doctorate in educational leadership from Loyola Marymount University. A veteran of the charter schools movement in California, she serves on several boards and committees, including the Board of the California Charter Schools Association, the Educators of Color (EdLoc) Leadership Committee, and the L.A. County Commission on Local Government Services.

Allison Greenwood Bajracharya
Chief Operations and Strategy Officer

Before joining Camino Nuevo, Allison Bajracharya was the founding California State Executive Director of Murmuration, a startup organization that rests at the intersection of education policy, community organizing, and data. Previously. Allison worked at the California Charter Schools Association, where she wore many hats -- from Managing Regional Director of Advocacy to Senior Vice President of Organizing.

Allison’s professional experiences also include serving as the Managing Director of District Strategy at Teach for America and as the Director of Community Affairs for former LAUSD School Board Member Marlene Canter. Allison started her career as a Teach for America high school teacher in New Orleans.

Allison received her bachelor's degree from Middlebury College and her master's in public policy from the University of Southern California. She is active on the boards of the Silverlake Jewish Community Center, the STEM Preparatory Schools, and United Parents and Students. In her free time, Allison enjoys family adventures with her two children and husband.

 Heather McManus
Chief Learning Officer

Before assuming her current role, Heather McManus was the principal of Camino Nuevo's Kayne Siart Campus. Under her leadership, Kayne Siart (formerly Harvard) became one of the top-performing schools, winning state and national awards including the Gold Effective Practice Incentive Community (EPIC) award. Of the 180 schools competing for the national recognition, Kayne Siart was ranked sixth overall for growth in reading and ranked first overall for growth in math.

During her last two years as principal, Kayne Siart also was awarded the Title 1 Academic Achievement Award twice and was named a California Distinguished School. In 2016, Heather was named Chief Academic Officer, and now as the Chief Learning Officer oversees instruction and professional development at all seven Camino Nuevo schools. 

Heather originally moved to Los Angeles as a Teach for America corps member in 2005 and taught middle school English at the Foshay Learning Center. She was born and raised in Michigan and has earned degrees from the University of Michigan and the California State University at Northridge. Heather is currently pursuing a doctorate in Educational Leadership for Social Justice from Loyola Marymount University. 

Margaret Domingo
Rachel Hazlehurst 
Vice President of Curriculum and Instruction
Rachel Hazlehurst's passion for urban education and its potential to positively impact communities began when she was a Teach for America corps member and fifth grade bilingual teacher at Camino Nuevo’s Burlington Campus. Since then, she has served in a variety of leadership roles at Camino Nuevo. 
 
Rachel was the founding Literacy and Bilingual Education Coordinator at the Cisneros Campus when the school first opened in 2011. She then became the network's Director of Language and Literacy, responsible for offering guidance, support, and oversight to ensure that teachers across the network were providing high quality instruction to all students. As the Vice President of Curriculum and Instruction, Rachel oversees the Content Team, which focuses on implementing strong instructional practices and frameworks across schools. 
 
Rachel holds a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley and an M.A. in Elementary Education from Loyola Marymount University.

Robert L. Spencer

Vice President of Schools

Prior to joining Camino Nuevo, Robert Spencer served as a principal in Sacramento County for 12 years. He was the founding principal of Aspire Public Schools’ Alexander Twilight College Prep Academy, serving grades K-5, and of Alexander Twilight Secondary Academy, serving grades 6-12. He also served as the principal of Aspire Capitol Heights Academy, . 

Before becoming a principal, Robert was an eighth grade language arts teacher at Old Court Middle School in Baltimore County, Maryland.  During his service in the United States Army as a Preventive Medicine Sergeant, he supervised and conducted surveys and inspections of environmental factors that affected soldiers’ health.  While in the Army, Robert was awarded the 2001 Soldier of the Year Award, the Army Achievement Medal in 2000 and 2001, and the Army Commendation Medal in 2000. Robert began his career as a teacher at Gaston Middle School in Gaston, N.C, through Teach for America. 

Robert received his degree in English Language and Literature from the University of Virginia, and he has a Master of Arts in Secondary Education pending at Johns Hopkins University. 

 
 Margaret Domingo
Margaret Domingo
Vice President of Human Resources
 
In her role, Margaret Domingo is responsible for the management of human resources across all Camino Nuevo campuses and works closely with school leaders and employees to ensure compliance with policies and procedures. She is passionate about providing high quality educational opportunities to inner-city youth.
 
Margaret previously worked as a peer counselor and mentor for high school and middle school students in the Los Angeles and Crenshaw districts. She was also active in grassroots organizations, including the Service Employees International Union, where she campaigned for the rights of Latino and Korean immigrant workers. Prior to joining the Camino Nuevo team, Margaret worked in the Human Resources and Accounting Department for Warner Bros. Entertainment.
 

Margaret earned a bachelor's degree in political science with a minor in Chicano/a Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles. She holds two certificates in human resources, including one from Loyola Marymount University.

 

 

Erica Gonzalez 
Vice President of Programs
 

Erica Gonzalez drives the vision for programs across Camino Nuevo schools. Known as the Camino Nuevo Continuum of Care, these programs include the college success team, experiential learning, parent engagement and advocacy, internships and student support services. 

Erica is a former Senior Policy Advisor at the U.S. Department of Housing and Development in the Office of Public and Indian Housing. Prior to working in the federal government she was the Director of Public Policy and Community Partnerships for Green Dot Public Schools where she was responsible for executing Green Dot’s reform agenda by advocating at the local, state and federal level for education reform, supporting existing schools with compliance and oversight, the development of new schools and overseeing the implementation a community schools model at the new Locke Wellness Center.

Prior to working at Green Dot she was the Associate Director of Barrio Action Youth and Family Center overseeing the capital campaign and construction of a $3.6 million new youth and family center and also worked as a legislative analyst for the Los Angeles County Community Development Commission. She earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley and a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and had the opportunity to study abroad at the National Autonomous University in Mexico City, UNAM.

 

Mary O'Halloran 
Vice President of Operations
 

Mary O’Halloran joined the Camino Nuevo team in 2017 to oversee its operations, facilities, IT and knowledge management teams. With more than 20 years of experience in the private and non-profit sectors, Mary developed a commitment to providing necessary, clear and consistent improvements through strong teamwork. She is passionate about enabling this environment in education and has volunteered at Expanding Your Horizons, Venice Family Clinics, Ronald McDonald Houses and elsewhere.

Mary has a Bachelor’s of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and held leadership positions at RAND and AT&T/DIRECTV. Her national speaking engagements include the American Productivity and Quality Center’s knowledge management conference and KM World in Washington, DC.

 


Danny Herrera
Senior Director of Talent 
Danny Herrera is responsible for recruiting, retaining, and developing strong leaders and teachers at Camino Nuevo schools. Previously, Danny was a principal, assistant principal, dean of instruction, and teacher in both district and charter schools in Los Angeles.
 
As principal at PUC Lakeview Charter Academy, he guided and collaborated with stakeholders to create a robust mission, vision, and student support system that led to improved outcomes for students school-wide, including a successful 6-year WASC re-accreditation. He has been a School Retool Fellow, a Teach Plus Policy Fellow, and a KIPP School Leadership Program teacher. A former Teach for America corps member, he was a coach for middle school English teachers. 
 
Danny enjoys running and has coached Students Run L.A. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and peace and conflict studies from the University of California, Berkeley and a master’s degree in educational leadership and policy studies from the California State University at Northridge. He is currently pursuing an doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Southern California.